January 22, 2018

Shanghai Tang

When I had the Financial Times delivered on Saturday mornings, one of the things I loved reading was Sir David Tang’s Agony Uncle column. It was snarky, funny, intelligent and insightful. I also knew Sir David from his late, lamented shop, an outpost of which was in New York, called Shanghai Tang. It, along with Takashmaya, were two places I always visited in NYC.image

Sadly, Sir David died at age 63 last summer, and next week, Christie’s in London is auctioning off his possessions. Although there are fewer than 300 lots, their diversity represents Sir David’s broad world view and creativity, shown in his shops and restaurants. He was a well-known collector, and this auction features everything from artworks by Tracey Emin and Noel Coward, to fine china, furniture, and gorgeous pieces from Sir David’s quirky wardrobe.

Here are a few of my favourites.

Who doesn’t want an 87 inch leather Chesterfield sofa? image

Or this George, III Mahogany Exercise Chair. Apparently the cushions are spring, so maybe you bounce?image

Cartier silver-gilt pill box with Prince of Wales Feathersimage

Nothing says Victorian excess like a silver egg timer by Garrard.image

Lots and lots of luggage in one lot. Starting bid is just $1300!image

Wonderful picture frames.image

Diagonal Cartier watch. image

Tracey Emin piece on a linen napkin. Not a big fan of hers, but I actually like this one.image

Set of 20 silvered Louis XV chairs with green velvet. LOVE these!image

Sketch of David Bowie by Adrian George for the Sunday Timesimage

Partial set of china decorated with a gilt 'LZ' monogram for Luftschiff Zeppelinimage

You can view the entire catalogue here, and there are loads of fun things on offer!


  1. Indeed, one does bounce on that George III exercise stool. I suppose it would work to increase heart rate, but wouldn't do much for the muscles. Still better than nothing.
    I used to shop at Shanghai Tang and Takashimaya when I worked in that neighbourhood. Shanghai Tang was my favourite.

  2. You had me at the vintage luggage.... sigh!


Thank you for reading and commenting on Pigtown*Design. I read each and every comment and try to reply if I have your e-mail address.